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Avoid Expectation Meltdown

January 1, 2009: 

You want me to do what? You never told me I was supposed to do that! How many times have you said or heard this? When I facilitate strategic planning sessions or leadership training at REALTOR® associations across the country, I hear it frequently. Often, elected leaders are just as unclear about what is expected of them as AEs are about what their elected leaders expect them to be doing.

So much of the strife and discontent that I encounter can be avoided with clearly established and communicated expectations.

Need More Volunteers? Five tips for filling your committees.

January 1, 2009: 

Building a successful association hinges on finding volunteers to give their time, energy, and talent. Yet some associations continually struggle to attract volunteers. These days, some fear even asking members who are experiencing a challenging business environment. Here are some new (and some tried-and-true) tips for recruiting volunteers.

Chair Report: The Art of Value

January 1, 2009: 

When financial and economic times get tough, we concentrate on what value our associations bring to our members. For some, the value proposition is ongoing, drives their strategic thinking, and factors in today’s economy as just another part of the mix. But for many of us, we were caught in a wave of new members, higher membership retention rates, and an eagerness to raise our budgets to match the new revenues. Life was too easy, and for many years, we did not have to face our relevancy.

Unflattering Finds Monitor and protect your reputation online.

January 1, 2009: 

In my outreach visits, I am increasingly finding that associations and their members are caught up in the whirlwind of social media. There are networking sites for just about any business, hobby, or game—you name it. And it can be fun, but Facebook, LinkedIn, MySpace, Twitter, and many more allow anyone to post about everyone . . . and they’re not always saying nice things. Your association and members may be the subject of posts by fellow members, clients, or even strangers, and never know it.

What Is Your Value?

January 1, 2009: 

Associations everywhere are talking about value propositions and how important it is to have a good one. But what does that really mean?

Essentially, a value proposition is the statement of the tangible things your association offers in return for membership dues.

Are You CEO Material?

January 1, 2009: 

The search for a new CEO always starts with a long wish list of characteristics, usually paired with the caveat “There is no way anyone could meet these requirements, but this is what we want to see in the candidates you bring us.” We hear this statement all the time from the association boards of -directors we work with to locate a new CEO.

At first, their wish list of CEO characteristics is long. But as the search progresses, the same four or five key criteria always move to the top.